No matter how old you are and whether this is a milestone year or not, celebrating birthdays is always a fun part of life. On the Seagate blog, we’ve recently been exploring how to celebrate make special holidays easier on your diet and the environment, and birthdays should be no exception.
Here are a few tips for how to celebrate your friends and family members’ birthdays in a healthier and eco-friendlier way.
Skip the Wrapping Paper
Throw-away wrapping paper is a big waste and a non-essential part of a birthday celebration. Instead of wrapping gifts with disposable paper, keep a stack of reusable gift bags in your closet for the occasion. You can also re-purpose old newspapers and magazines that you are done reading to use as wrapping paper. After using these items again, make sure to put them into the recycling bin and not the trash.
Ditch Plastic Cups and Utensils
Another great way to be more environmentally conscious for birthdays is to steer clear of disposable cups, utensils, and plates made from plastic or paper. Instead, choose reusable items and wash them at the end of your party. Alternatively, choose compostable party tableware options that are biodegradable and still come in fun colors and patterns.
Offer More Than Just Cake
A birthday cake is often the centerpiece of a birthday party and a beloved tradition. You certainly don’t need to do away with the cake entirely to throw a healthy party, but just know that not all cakes are created equal.
Make birthday cakes at home rather than buying store-bought versions so you can be aware of and control all of the ingredients that go into them. For example, shortcakes and angel food cakes topped with fresh fruits are good options for birthdays. In addition to cake, you can also set out a fresh fruit platter, fruit kabobs, and fruit cups that will satisfy both kids and adults.
Get Active with Themed Activities
To keep the momentum going with your healthy birthday party, plan some activities that get your guests up and moving. You can host fun games in the backyard or even in the house if the weather doesn’t cooperate for your birthday celebration. To take the hassle out of planning, you can also host your birthday party at a roller skating rink, ice skating rink, bowling alley, trampoline center, or batting cages to keep everyone active.
Choose Eco-Friendly Gifts
Many people, especially kids, expect gifts on their birthdays, but traditional gifts can just add to the clutter and plastic consumption in your life. As an alternative, you can request no gifts or experiential gifts that help instill the values of fun experiences over material goods. Eco-friendly gift ideas include a DIY scavenger hunt game you create, tickets to a museum, or donation in the birthday girl or boy’s name to an animal charity.
Recycle, Reuse, and Compost
After your birthday celebrating is done, do your best to corral the aftermath into piles for recycling, reusing, and composting. Many leftover birthday foods can be composted easily at home, while paper items can be put into the recycling bin and gift bags and reusable decorations put away in the closet for future celebrations.
Every birthday represents a new year to make a difference in your own health and how you personally impact the environment. So, remember these tips as you get ready for another trip around the sun!